Do It For Science (The Ragtag Band)
You don’t have to know a lot about Science to enjoy the Rag Tag Band’s quirky cabaret “Do It For Science”. (I am proof of that.). Despite the lab coats and safety glasses, the performers are not scientists, but just a ragtag band of musicians (Richard Grantham, Wayne Jennings, Dale Peachy and Alice Wheeler) who like silly songs and dancing girls. And this is the perfect way to describe the show, which is brought to you by the letter O (for oxygen), the colour green (for mucus) and the number Pi.
Who would have thought that science could be such fodder for fun? Not only is the between-song banter packed full of puns and bad dad jokes (Why can’t you trust an atom? They make up everything), but the songs themselves are both catching and clever – whether they be about Pi, the periodic table (updated to account for recent discoveries) or a strange love song to mucus. And the musicians do an excellent job, not only with their range of usual instruments, but when the branch out courtesy of a nose whistle and ‘hand-crafted’ barbie piano. It is unfortunate that occasionally vocals get lost due to either poor sound mixing, apprehensive delivery (apart from that of dynamic front man Wayne Jennings) or perhaps even the acoustics of the Northshore Shed theatre space itself. While this happens only occasionally, meaning that some of the script’s terrific humour is missed, the overall enjoyment of the show is not overly marred.
“Do It For Science” is an innovative and inventive production that achieves the perfect balance between entertainment and education. As audience members are told when taken outside ‘on excursion’, the performers don’t want to set the world of fire; just light a flame in your heart. And in their provision of fascinating facts, they are well on their way to achieving this goal as songs are not only accompanied by burlesque dance illustrations (courtesy of Lena Marlene and Cello Bordello), but also scientific demonstrations. These experiments are a real highlight, especially for the scientifically ignorant in the audience. The oohs and ahhs that frequently follow from the crowd, are testament to the show’s fundamental engagement. Indeed, as an exploration of the silliness of its subject matter, “Do I For Science” is guaranteed to please.
You can find all of my Anywhere Theatre Festival reviews on the Festival website.